Jerusalem the unmanageable

Even with our best definitions of faith it is puzzling that CNN is rewriting the facts about Jerusalem’s significance as an example faith and prime real estate.  When students are introduced to the religions of the world there are many similarities in practices  and beliefs between a number of them that the students find impressive.  On closer inspection the gaping holes appear leaving little question that there is no such thing as a world religion.  The religions that have been practiced in Palestine recognize that a system of government needs to have a king and a royal residence. Mosaic doctrine features God’s choice of a place and a king, and the centuries of human supervision only go to show that the holy city and Zion its daughter, are royal leases, and therefore unmanageable by mere humans.

A set of beliefs and practices

If some people have a religious preference it is likely to be on public display in things like attending a place of worship, a choice of food, approved  or recommended clothing.  It is less likely to be the desirable virtues recognizable in every culture: mercy, generosity,  justice, industriousness, and joviality. Jerusalem’s record is not a good choice for faith or faithfulness.  Way back in Israel’s wilderness experience God evaluated that generation as void of faithfulness.

“Then He said, ‘I will hide My face from them, I will see what their end shall be; For they are a perverse generation, Sons in whom is no faithfulness.

Deuteronomy 32:20

So where is CNN going with “Jerusalem: city of faith”?  Naturally we can say that Judaism is a Jerusalem thing even though the Jewish faith emerged from (a) Mount Sinai (b) from the patriarchal age and (c) from the interpretations of the sages. The Jerusalem temple was the place where Israelite faith was centred.

We cannot say the same about Islam or Christianity.  Neither has any genesis in Jerusalem.  Christ eminently did not, for example, die in the city.  He could not!

For the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the holy place by the high priest as an offering for sin, are burned outside the camp. Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people through His own blood, suffered outside the gate. So, let us go out to Him outside the camp, bearing His reproach. For here we do not have a lasting city, but we are seeking the city which is to come.

Hebrews 13:11-14

It would be a considerable contribution to the contradictions of our times if someone handed us a narrative that gives Jerusalem her peace without her king. Real estate has to do with where we spend our money, on this world or on another. Jerusalem is not that kind of property, having bidders, conquerors and owners.  Can that thought! The city of the great king is his to populate in cosmopolitan splendour, well outside the partisan and religious bickering about who gets to worship where.

When a Samaritan woman asserted her people’s pride of having a place where they go to worship the Messiah had a surprise for her.

Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you [plural = Jewish people] say that in Jerusalem is the place where people ought to worship.”

John 4:20

Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father.

John 4:21

The flare ups of violence and all the military campaigns by the regional powers are in conflict with the design of Jerusalem. They are Exhibit A in the case against the general ignorance about pilgrimages and zionist movements, against Islamic assertions of prophetic primacy, and against the marketing tendencies of western politics. Homicide will not justify getting Jerusalem her peace. Maybe it is time to admit that the king’s city will be unmanageble by mere humans.

Who elected the police?

Five Toronto city councillors are reported to want an end to police enforcement of an order evicting the homeless residents from encampments around the city. It is clear that the encampments operate on the fringe of society where the residents are vulnerable to disease, exploitation by anarchists and professional protesters. No one doubts that evictions usually follow legal residencies gone bad. Encampments have no legal genesis. It should be sufficient for encamping homeless to be asked to leave and accept common housing arrangements. It is not. Someone may seeking to be a hero for the homeless.

Which part of enforcement do elected reps not understand?

Sackcloth and ashes

If ever there was a case to be made for national mourning for the living and the dead we have one now. History has flipped the page from the nice girl propaganda of the nations we have naively assumed to be exceptional examples of decency and even nobility. That generations of people in authority covered up the murders of thousands children in North America is no longer surprising. It certainly is time for all the stories we have been hearing of discrimination leading to homicide to be the subject of investigative commissions.

Don’t call me unpatriotic for my suit against Canadians

Then [Yeshua] began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent.

Matthew 11:20

Hopefully Canadian and US citizens can muster up the wisdom and courage to legislate for a month of national repentance over a heinous crime, solidarity with the oppressed and survivors, and for the healing of the grievous wound of our delusions of greatness.

His own hometown was not exempt from denunciation.

And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, will you? You will descend to Hades; for if the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day.

Matthew 11:23

Many leaders would have us celebrate wars and boast about the political systems we have invented but have little or nothing to say about the very obvious racist and genocidal foundation of our nations. From east to west and from north to south the homicidal streak in humanity is most obvious in jurisdictions where public signs of religion and strict ideology are more attractive than altruism and human generosity. Far worse than the silence is the absence of actions to put the brakes on hate (misogyny and xenophobia) and religious tyranny.

We can quit the fasting for breakthroughs in finances, personal relationships, and physical health until the need for national change of mind is riveted to the conscience of both old and young people. So get out your jeans and sit in the dust.

Your prophets have seen for you false and foolish visions; and they have not exposed your iniquity so as to restore you from captivity, but they have seen for you false and misleading oracles.

Lamentations 2:14

Church and state

There is an assumed art to putting smoke without fire on show.  Exhibit A and B in the modern era are the United Kingdom and the United States.  Let me remind us that there is a beast – a corporate entity – that is mired in bogus excellence and shallow displays of civic progress.   What else can we conclude in the age of “repeat garbage until it becomes treasure” when we know that just such a lying entity “comes up out of the earth” appears as a lamb and speaks as a dragon (Revelation 13:11-12) subjecting all humans to its devil worship or death?  It will be clear from Christ’s teaching and practice that the church of Christ has no conflict with any government.  There is simply neither competition nor partnership between the Saviour of the world and the world’s governments even though his death was orchestrated by two governments, one secular and the other religious.

We do not go as far as the Islamic Republic of Iran to call the United States or any other entity “the great satan” but just about anyone can earn the title, even individuals in the inner circle of God’s servants and friends.

The deadly opposition game

When the apostle Peter expressed his opinion that execution as a criminal was a bridge too far for his master he earned the title “satan”, and it was not due to demonic possession and Peter was not the devil. He was functioning as opposition. This sense of opposition or resistance is what underpins the Hebrew verb satan (שתן). Examples of its use appear as follows.

Oppose (Psalms 38:20), accuse (Zechariah 3:1), “those who are adversaries” (Psalm 71:13).

The church has an ongoing warfare with desires and deception.  It is decidedly not carnal.  It is not a battle between individuals (flesh and blood) or groups (contrived entities).  Israel, as the entity chosen to guard and preserve the record of divine intervention, had no division of church and state.  The many attempts by religious groups to dominate public life are clearly hostile to God’s design.  The deceit and criminal practices of churches and parachurch associations are out in the open. The state in the western world is not hostile to the church.  The churches depend on the state to legislate freedoms and, as in the general situation,  prosecute wrongdoing.  Recent history confirms the ancient observation that treachery is not restrained by government just as surely as the law of God did not prevent protracted violation of the covenant.

For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. 

Isaiah 9:6

Christ can find no effective alliance with government.  How do we know?  The kings of the earth organized themselves against God’s appointed rulers and leaders.  It was true of Joseph,  David, John the Baptist and the prophets. He is most assuredly not opposed to the organization of people into village,  town,  province and nation.

Church and state innovations

Israel can only be a kingdom again when the “church” and the state is governed by a priest-king. The church that wants political power is an anomaly that we have pretended not to have seen. We have been warned about wickedness in high places and we must recognize now that genocide is not the most wicked activity to be engaged. Persecution from churches or religious entities is not a modern phenomenon.

The blindness that accompanies Canada’s attempt to erase its First Nations is near absolute. King David of Israel could not build a temple because of his involvement in homicide. How on earth can Canada, the United States, or any other entity engage in nation-building with their hands handcuffed to the tools and weapons of murder and discrimination?

The perpetrators of genocide in Canada operated under the cover of the Vatican, the only church with nation status. The prevailing attitude of many states when dealing with people considered undesirable has been homicide. The nations, including the Vatican, seem to have assumed that clearing people out of the way for new residents has divine approval.

Church and state relations may yet turn out to be the severest test of spiritual fidelity. It was true of Israelites in Babylonian exile, true of Yeshua’s disciples facing the Roman empire and Judean religious government, and true of the brave heroes of the Protestant Reformation. What the modern church does not need are paper tigers leading people into unnecessary and deadly conflicts with the authorities.

More from the dark web

From a history professor

My brothers and sisters, when you hear the phrase: Build back better, don’t think it refers to a return to the classic style of governance No!  This is a reference to the Great Reset, a Maxcist, totalitarian style of governance.
(Host of WhatsApp group)

Who appointed these backroom leaders pope?  If they admit that they do not have the authority to interpret the Scriptures who could have appointed them to police the thoughts of others?

Capitalism the new golden rule?

“The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light. 22). But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness! 23). “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth. 24)

Matthew 6:22-24

People can think just fine

Thank you very much, blind scribe.  We think just fine without dictation from anyone.  Unlike these copycat scholars, calling themselves “intellectual”we are constrained to think.  “Don’t think…” is exactly where conservative (shallow) views come from. It is inevitable that their concepts do not convey them beyond a “classic style of governance”. We know that for both camps they have recognized (conservative and liberal) good governance means nothing but the idolatrous result  of mingling defunct Levitical conventions with Messianic exceptionalism.

These are the men who are hidden reefs in your love feasts when they feast with you without fear, caring for themselves; clouds without water, carried along by winds; autumn trees without fruit, doubly dead, uprooted; wild waves of the sea, casting up their own shame like foam; wandering stars, for whom the black darkness has been reserved forever.

Jude 12-13

These are muddy waters indeed and the same darkness that envelops the heroes of classic governance has these virtual wanderers in its grip.

Prayer on drugs

Why do You stand afar off, O Lord? Why do You hide Yourself in times of trouble? In pride the wicked hotly pursue the afflicted; Let them be caught in the plots which they have devised.

Psalms 10:1-2

If you are a Christian you cannot simply pick up and pray certain questions and sentiments. The selection a person’s from Psalm 10 may fit your feeling but may also show a person’s unbelief. Just think. Under what conditions is God not near (inside) the believer?

Forgiveness, then what?

Forgiveness is the highway where apologies, explanations expectations, regrets, rationalizations and remorse lose their crutches and acquire wheels.

Forgiveness is not a religious phenomenon.  People of all stripes are capable of letting go of injuries they have suffered.  People who are not religious or spiritual are equipped emotionally and rationally to make a firm break with animosity and hostility that may arise from injustices they have experienced.

It is curious how many religious people have a set of talking points about forgiveness which are wholly unattractive and inconsistent with a God of infinite mercy and compassion.

Take the sacred tent of the Levitical order.  It’s purpose was for divine residence and for divine communication with the priesthood, but at its innermost recesses there were operations for the expiation of sins. 

Let them construct a sanctuary for Me, that I may dwell among them.

Exodus 25:8

To see that this atonement process did not work one only needs to read the rest of the priest-temple narratives.

There I will meet with you; and from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are upon the ark of the testimony, I will speak to you about all that I will give you in commandment for the sons of Israel.

Exodus 25:22

It is beyond question that the people pursuing that ancient concept and its supporting regulations are outrageously bewitched, and the leaders wilfully forgetful, that “there were heavens from of old, and an earth compacted out of water and amidst water, by the word of God;” (2 Peter 3:5). All things from the beginning are not automatic contributors to the kingdom of God.

We say that after forgiveness comes the gift of the Holy Spirit not testing and failure. We say that after forgiveness comes the guarantee of the final redemption- of the body – not bondage to human and bodily discipline.

We are recipients of certainty, finality, rest, and peace. When Christ liberates people they are free for real, from death, bondage, and condemnation. When Christ saves people they are safe. What else could they be?